Since detergent pods hit the market back in 2012, authorities (and Consumerist) have been warning consumers to keep the products far, far away from children who might mistake them for candy. Procter & Gamble reports that incidents of young children poisoned by Tide’s detergent pods are way down. Public awareness probably helped, but putting them in jars that make them look less like candy has helped a lot more. [More]
The 1982 Tylenol poisoning murders, the chief reason why the tamper-proof packages of modern over-the-counter medications must be broken into with, at minimum, a chainsaw, are being investigated again in light of new tips and new forensic techniques. Well, that only took 28 years. [More]
In January 2006, William Cunningham laced soup with lighter fluid, peppers, and eventually Prozac and Amitriptyline, then fed it to his 18-month-old daughter and 3-year-old son. He then claimed the soup had been tampered with and threatened to sue Campbell Soup if they didn’t pay up. Yesterday he was sentenced to 100 years in prison.
Mars Petcare US is recalling 14 brands of dry dog and cat food made between February and July of this year, after two people who may have had contact with some of the food became infected with Salmonella. If you feed your dog or cat any of the brands listed below, here’s how to check the package code.
There’s more to the story about the person who died from drinking lamp oil. One 84-year-old NJ lady died after mistaking tiki torch oil for apple juice. 4 other NJ residents were hospitalized after doing the same. One of them was an 8-year old girl, now suffering permanent lung damage. Oddly, the victims were located in separate parts of the state. NJ Poison Information and Education System executive director Steve Marcus told Gothamist, “During my 40 years in medicine, you get an occasional kid who ingests kerosene, but I have never seen this kind of cluster.” (The Happening Part 2? Neurotoxins disable the part of people’s brains that makes them distinguish between household cleaners and refreshing beverages?) All of them drank the same product, oil in a clear plastic bottle labeled “Tiki Torch Fuel,” sold by Lamplight Farms, Inc. Amber in color, it’s visually indistinguishable from apple juice. Don’t forget to always keep chemicals under the sink and away from food, and always in original bottles. That some of these almost seem designed to look like tasty energy drinks doesn’t help matters.
The meat and poultry industries have learned that if you poison your customers enough times, they’ll eventually start losing trust in you—although, oddly, they won’t change their purchasing habits. That’s the takeaway from a study carried out by Meatingplace.com (snicker) and “its sister publication POULTRY” (ha ha WHERE’S CHRIS HANSON). However, no description of the study is provided other than that Zoomerang.com was used, so we’re not sure if the results are at all meaningful. We’re just glad the meat industry is starting to notice something’s wrong.
We can probably all agree that there haven’t been enough tainted-toy stories this year, so the Wall Street Journal is reporting that tests on about 1,200 toys by consumer and health organizations have revealed that about a third contain not just lead but “other potentially harmful chemicals, including mercury, cadmium and arsenic.” Oh, they must be talking about the new Bratz Heavy Metal dolls, R’senic and Mercurie.
Ohio’s legislature passed the Product Liability Act in 2006, which capped certain court damages at $5,000 and created special protections for companies that once sold paint containing lead. Gov. Ted Strickland vetoed it, but the Ohio Supreme Court overturned the veteo last month on a technicality. Today, a group of consumer advocates in Ohio turned in 1,800 signatures in an attempt to bring the issue to a public vote in November ’08. [Business Week]
Cars don’t use leaded gasoline anymore, but boy, oh boy … do toy companies still use lead paint! This Disney/Pixar branded toy chest is painted with red paint that “contains high levels of lead. Lead is toxic if ingested by young children and can cause adverse health effects.”
The children’s toy industry apparent refusal to stop putting lead in jewelry products lends itself to this morning’s best lede: “The good ship Lollipop has some unsafe cargo.”